after dinner sneeze

a lot of g says, t says

rationalizing the chocolate in my diet.

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t says:  I <3 chocolate.  A lot.  All the time.  I knew that sooner or later someone would find some kind of silver lining to the cloud that’ll come with eating 5+ servings a week.  And here it is:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/03/27/us-chocolate-idUSBRE82P11320120327

Inspired by this recent article, I’ve decided to put up some pics of some recent chocolate experiences:

Austrian chocolates courtesy of temporary Austrians!

When drb and his fiance visited us most recently, they came bearing gifts!  Handmade Austrian chocolate bars!  And, while not something that g and I are particularly aware of, these were organic, fair trade handmade Austrian chocolate bars.  That’s right – chocolate with a conscience!  Feeling that we should share these with friends, as access to foreign candies is rare for us, we brought them out when dining with dz and smn.  In short, I can tell you that they were fabulous.  Well, 2 were fabulous, while 1 was straight-up weird (in a potentially fabulous way!).  The “Happy Birthday” one (technically for g’s bday) had milk chocolate and caramel butter cream nougat and a stiff, thin layer of “cracknel” (crunchy caramel).  While not as dark a chocolate that I normally prefer, it was actually quite wonderful.  The ratio of chocolate to filling was just right, unlike those chocolate samplers that everyone sees around the Valentine’s day which have way too much filling.  Had it been darker chocolate, it might have overwhelmed the sweet caramel, so I liked it the way it was (but wonder what would happen if there was a dark chocolate version with a bit of salt).  The sesame and sour cherry one I think was crowd favorite.  Imagine a mouthful of bitter dark chocolate, a sweet-and-sour cherry overtone, and a hint of sesame in the background and that’s precisely what this tasted like.  I’m going to add some sesame to my cherry chocolate chip cookies the next time I make them.  The wildcard here was the ginger-carrot bar, which had a “carrot chocolate” with “coconut and ginger cream”.  I think that this caught us off-guard because I have a feeling that “carrot chocolate” is as much a chocolate as “white chocolate” is (i.e. NOT chocolate).  It was interesting – the coconut was a nice surprise (we didn’t read the label before indulging).  While definitely the loser of the trio, as it was the only one we had leftovers of, I think that I’m going to have to experiment with this bar some more before criticizing it.

take 2 cookies and call me in the morning ...

My last chocolate adventure has to do with Insomnia Cookies, which recently opened up a storefront in addition to their truck (which I had visited before).  What’s better than having closer access to delicious cookies?  FREE cookies!  As I had mentioned, the week they were opening, they were giving away free cookies.  Obviously, I absolutely had to find some excuse to visit the store and get my free cookie.  But why stop there?  Why not support them and actually buy a cookie, too?  So, as you can see, I got a free standard chocolate chunk cookie (on the left), and I bought the triple chocolate deluxe one (on the right).  I won’t belabor just how awesome it was to eat warm fresh cookies.  Simply put, there are few desserts that can rival such a feeling.  I will say, though, that the deluxe cookie actually did taste better than the regular, free one.  Is it worth the nearly doubling in price?  Well, it is larger (I calculated it to be approximately 40% bigger by volume), but even more important is that because of this, the center is chewier.  If you’re like me, a chewy center is key, so I guess I’m going to always have to with the deluxe.  Yea.  I’m sure that’s exactly what Insomnia Cookies wants me to do.  Oh well.  I guess they know their target audience: suckers for cookies (n.b. I still prefer my homemade cookies to these because I like a darker chocolate and some salt, but it’s not like I’m crazy enough to have dough on hand at all times or anything … right?  No.  That’d be crazy.)

Written by afterdinnersneeze

29 March 2012 at 11:35am

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